Basketball (M)

Men's Basketball Opens New Year With Rout of Queens

SALISBURY, NC -- Catawba seniors Antonio Houston (Charlotte, NC/E. Mecklenburg HS) and Donald Rutherford (Morganton, NC/Freedom HS) each scored 20 points in a 100-86 win over visiting Queens in men’s basketball action on Saturday afternoon at Goodman Gym.  The Catawba Indians improve to 7-5, while the Royals fall to 4-4. 

Rutherford did his damage in the first half, scoring 17 points on 7-of-9 shooting as Catawba raced to a 52-38 lead at the break.  Houston’s three-pointer 1:21 into the game gave the Indians a 3-2 lead it would never relinquish.  Rutherford had a layup at the 13:06 mark for a 17-8 edge.

Queens rallied from the early deficit as Daniel Bailey (Irmo, SC) scored seven points in a run that tied the game at 22-all at the mid point of the first half.  Bailey would finish with a double-double, posting highs of 33 points and 12 rebounds.  He hit on 12-of-18 shots. 

After the Royals pulled even, Catawba reeled off nine straight points and began to pull away, leading 52-38 at the half.  Catawba dominated the early part of the second half, going up by a 78-51 advantage with 10:06 to play.  A three-point play by Stephen Coles (Danville, VA/Washington HS) with 7:21 remaining gave the Indians their biggest lead of 29 points at 91-62.

Catawba shot 49% for the game, including 56% in the opening half.  The Indians also held a 42-37 edge on the boards and were a plus-eight in turnover margin.  Rutherford finished 8-for-10 from the floor and added nine rebounds.  Houston picked up seven boards.  Rob Fields (Orangeburg, SC/Orangeburg-Wilkerson HS) also reached double figures for the Tribe with 10 points.

David Cheek (Graham, NC) followed Bailey with 15 points for Queens.  The Royals hit on 47% from the field and were 9-of-21 from three-point range. 

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